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Bringing “Slither’s” creatures to life
Slithery set tour with Nathan Fillion
“A Making Of”: The sick minds and slimy days of “Slither”
Feature commentary with director James Gunn and actor Nathan Fillion
“From the writer of 2004’s “Dawn of the Dead” comes the deliciously demented story of an unnamed evil wreaking havoc on a small town. Intent on devouring all life on Earth, this dark force is infecting anyone in its path. Now, it’s up to the local sheriff, Bill Pardy (Nathan Fillion, “Serenity”), and his team to stop the spread of rampant devastation – and shocking mutilation – before it’s too late.”
“Slither” is rated R for strong horror violence and gore, and language.
Done with a knowing wink and a nod, “Slither” doesn’t offer much in the way of scares, but makes up for it in laughs and decent banter and a number of well executed gross out moments.
It’s an incredibly tricky balance of tone to maintain – one that sends many lesser films plummeting into unintentional self-mockery – but first-time director James Gunn (“Dawn of the Dead”) manages it with aplomb. He also manages the even more difficult task of adding a bathetic element to the monster that actually gives the film some heart.
Most of the laughs, not surprisingly, are courtesy of Fillion whose irony-filled taciturn charm is on full display here. He’s ably assisted by Gregg Henry as the very earthy mayor and a number of well chosen and well executed sight gags that always manage to be funny without ever going over-the-top into straight out ludicrousness. Not everyone’s so lucky; plucky Tania Saulnier, despite an excellent introduction as she escapes from slugs invading her bathtub, ends up spending most of the film as an exposition device.
The monster effects aren’t the best either. The main creature design doesn’t seem to have a well thought-out concept behind it and the digital work on the slugs is uneven. It’s hard to make a slug, even a fast moving slug, creepy but Gunn does get a few good moments out of them.
If you’re looking for real horror look elsewhere, but if you’re looking for an entertaining film, “Slither” fits the bill.
Among the non-standard features is a set tour conducted by Nathan Fillion with a video camera. The footage he filmed is quite funny and it looks like everyone had a lot of fun on the set. There’s also a short “Bill Pardy” featurette where they describe an in-joke from the set where Fillion would frequently repeat, “I’m Bill Pardy.”
Overall, there’s a lot here in the bonus features to make DVD fans happy. Whether you’re interested in the effects, make-up, or just general behind-the-scenes footage, you’ll find what youre looking for.
The Bottom Line: